Over and Under: The 2000 NBA Draft

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The NBA Draft is a gamble from the number one overall selection, down to “Mr. Irrelevant” No. 60.

Every time during the draft or even in the offseason everyone looks at the big draft busts or steals that took place in years past. Here at Basketball Society, I’ve decided to do something a little different. Over the course of the next few days, I will be assembling teams of past NBA drafts from 2000 to 2016. There will be two teams from each class, the over-drafted and under-drafted team. Both teams will follow the standard All-NBA Team format; two guards, two forwards and a center.

The over-drafted teams will consist of players who came out of college (or high school for some) with high expectations, where they were drafted, how well they did with the team they were drafted and their career overall. The under-drafted teams follow the same way, guys who were overlooked in the draft and turned out to be hidden gems in that class.

The 2000 NBA Draft was one of the worst drafts in history. Only three players (Kenyon Martin, Jamaal Magloire and Michael Redd) were named All-Stars, one made an All-NBA Team (Michael Redd) and three players have won a major end of the season award (Mike Miller winning Rookie of the Year and Sixth Man of the Year, Hedo Turkoglu winning Most Improved Player and Jamal Crawford winning three Sixth Man of the Year awards).

Here is the over and under drafted teams I came up with for the 2000 NBA Draft class.

2000 Over-Drafted Team

(Photo by: Donald Miralle /Allsport)

Guard: Mateen Cleaves 

  • Drafted: #14 by the Detroit Pistons
  • Years in the NBA: Six
  • Career Stats: 3.6 points, 1.0 rebounds and 1.9 assists
  • NBA Awards: None

Most basketball junkies remember Cleaves winning the NCAA Championship with Michigan State in 2000 while receiving other awards in college. Many figured he would transition well in the NBA but sadly that was not the case. He averaged 5.4 points in his first season with the Pistons and was traded to the Sacramento Kings. He again moved to the Cleveland Cavaliers before finishing his career with the Seattle SuperSonics in 2006. Some might argue that a 14th selection might not necessarily be considered “Over-Drafted” but looking at his college accolades to his short NBA career, he was over selected in my book.

(Photo by: famousfix.com)

Guard: DerMarr Johnson

  • Drafted: #2 by the Atlanta Hawks
  • Years in the NBA: Seven
  • Career Stats: 6.2 points & 2.2 rebounds
  • NBA Awards: None

Johnson was a High School All-American and was standout at the University of Cincinnati. His first two years were nothing spectacular and unfortunately, he crashed his career into a tree prior to the 2002 NBA season. Johnson was severely injured and missed the 2002-03 season. He attempted multiple comebacks and latched on to a few teams across the country and overseas but was never the player he was once looked at. Johnson still continues to play and is currently vice-captain for 3’s Company, a team in the new BIG3 league that will debut on June 25th.

(Photo by: Andy Hayt /NBAE/Getty Images)

Forward: Darius Miles

  • Drafted: #3 by the Los Angeles Clippers
  • Years in the NBA: Seven
  • Career Stats: 10.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 1.9 assists & 1.1 blocks
  • NBA Awards: All-Rookie First Team

Miles was another can’t miss prospect out of high school and the Clippers selected him #3 overall in hopes to put some life into the Clippers franchise. While he only missed one game during his first two years in LA but the Clippers did not qualify for the playoffs. He was a headcase and was constantly clashing with staff, ultimately being traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers then again to the Portland Trail Blazers. Miles had a confrontation with then Blazers head coach Maurice Cheeks, which resulted in a suspension. He eventually missed two and a half seasons with the Trail Blazers due to a severe knee injury. He attempted a comeback and even played for the Grizzlies for a few games but was never the player he once was considered coming out of high school.

(Photo by: Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

Forward: Marcus Fizer

  • Drafted: #4 overall by the Chicago Bulls
  • Years in the NBA: Six
  • Career Stats: 9.6 points & 2.3 rebounds
  • NBA Awards: All-Rookie Second Team

Fizer was an All-American and Big 12 Player of the Year in 2000 with the Iowa State Cyclones. Many questioned why the Bulls selected him since the team already had Elton Brand at the power forward spot. During his four years in Chicago the most he averaged a season was 12.3 points. He bounced to the Bucks and Hornets before ending his NBA career for good in 2006. Fizer has played in the D-League and overseas since, most recently with Defensor Sporting Club in Uruguay.

(Photo by: Slamonline.com)

Center: Stromile Swift

  • Drafted: #2 overall by the Vancouver Grizzlies
  • Years in the NBA: Nine
  • Career Stats: 8.4 points, 4.6 rebounds & 1.2 blocks
  • NBA Awards: None

Easily one of the best names in the draft, Swift was a stud out of LSU and looked to bring some energy into the Vancouver franchise. After a sub-par rookie year, Swift averaged 11.8 points his second year with the now Memphis Grizzlies. He was then traded to Houston for one year, then back to Memphis and again traded to the New Jersey Nets. He played 27 games in two years with the Nets before ending his career with the Suns in 2009. Swift last played in 2009-2010 for Shandong Golden Stars in the Chinese Basketball Association.

Just from looking at the first few picks this draft was absolutely horrible. While some of the guys I picked for the under-drafted team might not even be considered in other draft classes. But these guys stayed in the league longer than most and they were drafted in spots that most would not figure last long in the league

2000 Under-Drafted Team

(Photo by: Dave Abel/Getty Images)

Guard: Morris Peterson

  • Drafted: #21 by the Toronto Raptors
  • Years in the NBA: 11
  • Career Stats: 10.7 points, 3.5 rebounds & 1.5 assists
  • NBA Awards: All-Rookie First Team

Peterson spent his first seven years in Toronto and was a fan favorite in the crowd. He was a two-way guard that rarely missed any playing time. While he was never an All-Star or an All-NBA selection, Peterson was one of the more successful guards selected late in the draft.

(Photo By: Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)

Guard: Michael Redd

  • Drafted: #43 overall by the Milwaukee Bucks
  • Years in the NBA: 12
  • Career Stats: 19.0 points, 3.8 rebounds & 2.1 assists
  • NBA Awards: 2004 All-Star, All-NBA Third Team

Michael Redd was one of the best players in this draft class. He is the only member of this class to be named to an All-NBA team and an All-Star team. At point in his career, Redd was averaging up to 22 points and game and looked to be one of the top shooting guards in the league. Sadly, Redd tore his same ACL twice in two years from 2009 to 2011. He tried to make a comeback with the Suns in 2012 but retired once the season was over. Even with an injury that ruined his promising NBA career, he is still one of the bright spots on this horrid NBA Draft class.

(Photo by: USATSI)

Forward: Hedo Turkoglu

  • Drafted: #16 overall by the Sacramento Kings
  • Years in the NBA: 15
  • Career Stats: 11.1 points, 4.0 rebounds & 2.8 assists
  • NBA Awards: 2008 Most Improved Player of the Year, All-Rookie Second Team

Much like Cleaves being mentioned as an over-draft at 14, the same can be said for Turkoglu as an under-draft at 16. Outside of active players Mike Miller and Jamal Crawford (selected #5 and #8 respectively), only Turkoglu and #1 overall selection Kenyon Martin had a longer NBA careers. He did not blossom until his forth year in the NBA with the Orlando Magic, but he proved that he was a reliable scorer while on the court.

(Photo by: Complex.com)

Forward: Jamaal Magloire

  • Drafted: #19 overall by the Charlotte Hornets
  • Years in the NBA: 12
  • Career Stats: 7.2 points & 6.5 rebounds
  • NBA Awards: 2004 All- Star

There is a thin line of power forwards in this draft. Only him and Kenyon Martin are the only big man All-Star selections for this draft class. He did have a few solid years in the beginning of his career so there was some value at the 19th overall pick, but that is not saying much.

Center: Primoz Brezec

  • Drafted: #27 overall by the Indiana Pacers
  • Years in the NBA: 11
  • Career Stats: 7.2 points & 3.9 rebounds
  • NBA Awards: None

Okay, here is where we really scrape the bottom of the barrel here. Brezec had a successful career overseas before coming to the NBA in 2001 (The Pacers drafted him in 2000 but decided to stay overseas for one year). No, he did not have the career like he had overseas and had a career high 13.0 in 2005, but Brezec was one of the few late draft picks to stick in the NBA for a few years, so I have to give him credit.

The 2000 NBA Draft class will always be known as a complete bust overall. While there were a few decent picks (Kenyon Martin, Mike Miller and Jamal Crawford) in the top 10, the selections after were few and far between, but this should be an exciting series to continue with.

Stay tuned for the 2001 NBA Over/Under-Drafted teams.

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